Poker is one of the most popular card games around. It is played everywhere, from the best Las Vegas casino to the best Atlantic City Casino, from Monte Carlo to Budapest and everywhere in between. Play Microgaming poker or Playtech on your computer, competing against a computer, a live dealer, or other players. With poker, it's all about choice – in venues and in game varieties as well.
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Following is a description of Poker in its most basic form. Once you learn and feel comfortable with the ins and outs of this relatively simple game, you'll be ready to move onto more complicated variations.
Card Rankings – Knowing When You've Got A Good Hand
There is only one winner in Poker – the person with the best hand – or the person who is able to make you think that they have the best hand. Poker hands are ranked according to the strength and rarity of the relationship between the cards. Relationships are based on card values, colors and symbols. Bets are placed based on each player's belief in the strength of his hand.
Basic Card Rankings (5 Card Game) – Weak to Strong
High – This is the lowest ranking because basically, the cards in the players hand have no relationship to each other. They are not the same color, not the same value. If a player who 'has nothing' tries to bluff (pretend) or just doesn't when to fold (quit), the dealer calls the hand by the highest card in it.
One pair – Two of the cards in your hand are have the same face and the other three cards share no common relationship.
Two Pair – Two of the cards in your hand have the same value and another two cards have the same value.
Three pair – Three cards have the same value.
Straight – All five cards, regardless of color or suit,
are part of the same numerical order series. Aces can fit into either the beginning of a straight (A, 2, 3, 4, 5) or at the end (9, 10, 11, 12,A).
Flush – All five cards are the same suit, regardless of their numerical value.
Full House – A combination of two of a kind and three of a kind.
Four of a Kind – Four cards with the same value and one unrelated card.
Straight Flush – The same as a straight, only all cards share the same suit.
Royal Flush – A hand made up of 10, J, K, Q, A of the same suit.
When two players have hands bearing the same ranking, the hand with the highest cards wins.
Poker is as much a game of skill as it is a game of chance. To master this skill, you first must master the basic rules and regulations of the game. Even before you think about betting, take the time to study the rankings listed above. Variations like Five Card Draw, Texas Hold 'em, Seven Card Stud, Omaha are available at all the best casinos and are all based on the same basic ranking.